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Rising star suffers heart attack

Royal High architect Hoskins dies suddenly at 48

Gareth HoskinsOne of Scotland’s rising architects has died at the age of 48. Gareth Hoskins, managing director of Glasgow-based Hoskins Architects, is believed to have suffered a heart attack following a fencing match.

His firm was involved in the design of the proposed five-star hotel for the former Royal High School in Edinburgh.

It also played a key role in the £47 million revamp of the National Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh, the V&A and the first-ever Scottish Pavilion at the Venice Biennale.

The news will overshadow the start of Scotland’s year of architecture and design.

In a statement, the firm said: “It is with great sadness that we confirm that Gareth Hoskins OBE, the founder and Managing Director of Hoskins Architects, has died.

“Gareth, who was 48, took ill at an event in Edinburgh on Sunday 3rd January and, despite receiving the best care possible in Edinburgh Royal Infirmary, he passed away on Saturday (9th January).

“Everyone at Hoskins Architects is deeply shocked and saddened by this untimely loss. Our thoughts are with Gareth’s family.”

Chris Coleman-Smith, a co-director of Hoskins Architects, said: “Everyone at Hoskins Architects has lost an exceptional architect, a visionary and a gifted leader, but above all a very good friend. Gareth leaves a huge gap, he was such a special person. We appreciate the very many messages of condolence that have already been received.”

There will be a private family funeral and a memorial service is planned.

Tributes were paid on Twitter.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: “Very sad to hear of the death of Gareth Hoskins, one of Scotland’s finest architects.”

Neil Baxter, chief executive of the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland, said: “Scottish architecture has lost one of its brightest young stars- Gareth Hoskins OBE RSA FRIAS (1967-2016). Rest in peace Gareth.

Mr Hoskins trained as an architect at the Glasgow School of Art and at Florence University. He set up his practice in Glasgow in 1998 after spending six years working at Penoyre and Prasad in London.

The practice rebranded last year, changing its name from Gareth Hoskins Architects to Hoskins Architects to recognise the contribution of its 40-strong staff.

As well as the controversial design for the former Royal High School in Edinburgh – which councillors rejected last month – the firm was working on a £5.8m headquarters for the National Theatre of Scotland and the £30 million redevelopment of Aberdeen Art Gallery.

Mr Hoskins sat on design review panels for Architecture and Design Scotland and was the Scottish Government’s National Healthcare Design Champion from 2006 to 2010.

He was named Young Architect of the Year in 2000, Architect of the Year in 2006 and in 2009 Scottish Architect of the Year.

In 2008 he was made a fellow of the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland and the following year he was elected to the Royal Scottish Academy.

Mr Hoskins received an OBE for services to architecture in 2010.

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